Frankie Cosmos: Close It Quietly review – Mild changes to a winning formula

Fri, Sep 6, 2019, 05:00

   
 

Album:
Close It Quietly

Artist:
Frankie Cosmos

Label:
Sub Pop

Genre:
Alternative

“The world is crumbling and I don’t have much to say,” sings Greta Kline in the opening seconds of new album Close It Quietly. Only half this statement is true. Because under various different names, Kline has always had a lot to say. The New Yorker has prolifically recorded twee indie pop songs that resemble warm conversations over coffee.

This latest record as Frankie Cosmos offers only mild alterations to a winning formula. Close It Quietly is full of short songs – 21 of them packed into 40 minutes – built around trembling vocals and unfussy instrumentals with an unmistakably 1990s bent. The heavier-than-usual arrangement of So Blue is reminiscent of Pavement; the pretty guitar plucks of Never Would score a tale of an old lover not missed.

Sometimes things can get a little overly familiar – the simple chords of Even Though I Knew, for example, feel well-worn – but this is a stronger set than previous album Vessel. Still, if Kline is to keep up this level of prolificacy, a sharper change of direction – a return to her electronic roots even – would be welcome sooner rather than later.